Wednesday, September 28, 2005

U.N. wants to run the internet

"(National Review Online) 'In my opinion, freedom of speech seems to be a politically sensitive issue. A lot of policy matters are behind it.' So observed Houlin Zhao, the man who wants to control the greatest forum for free expression in history. Zhao, a director of the U.N.'s International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and a former senior Chinese-government official, is a leader in the United Nations's effort to supplant the United States government in the supervision of the Internet. At a series of conferences called the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), held under the aegis of the ITU, and set to culminate in Tunis this November, the U.N. has floated a series of proposals for doing exactly that. The U.N.'s professed goals, which include expanding Internet access in developing countries and fighting spam, are laudable. However, the substance of its proposals — shifting Internet governance from the U.S. to a U.N. body — would produce an Internet in which regulations smother free speech, strangle net-driven economic growth, and threaten America's online security. A typical U.N. enterprise, in other words."


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